Russia has two cities named Rostov – this one is on the banks of the River Don, 1000 kilometres from Moscow, and 40 kilometres from the Sea of Azov, in the sourthern part of Russia. Rostov-on-Don boasts a 270-year history. The city's southern location are easily detected in the regional accent and the local mindset, the warm climate, and the local cuisine – which all combine to make it a unique city. A relaxed tempo of life sits alongside the infrastructure of a modern metropolois. Historic monuments of the Caucasus and the deeds of the Don Cossacks feature broadly.

Fascinating facts

  • Rostov-on-Don sits along a dividing line – the southern bank of the Don River is located in Asia, while the opposite, northern bank is situated in Europe.
  • The city's exceptional geographical location has always given Rostov-on-Don a special position in Russian life – with connections to five different seas (the Black Sea, the White Sea, the Baltic, the Sea of Azov, and the Caspian Sea).
  • Since the 19th century Rostov-On-Don has been known as the Gates of the North Caucasus. For many years, the rail line from Moscow was the only one in the region. Locals often refer to Rostov-on-Don as 'Papa' – by contrast with Odessa, which was always called 'Mama'.

City History

The history of Rostov-On-Don stretches back to 1749 – the year a Customs Office was opened on the right bank of the Don, and the establishment of a new Fotress of St Dmitry of Rostov (1760-1761), which gained strategic importance in the subsequent Russo-Turkish Wars. A new settlement slowly took shape around this new fortress. In 1807 the city exchanged its former status as a garrison for that of a county town – and then later, the full name of Rostov-On-Don.

During the Second World War, Rostov-on-Don was twice occupied by invading forces – as a result of which the city sustained serious damage from hostile action. Even so, the city was repaired and restored, making today's Rostov-On-Don the largest cultural and industrial centre in southern Russia. Visitors who come to Rostov-On-Don in summer have the chance to mix their cultural sightseeing with some beach relaxation.

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